i was looking for a laptop/camera recently cos i need to bring my MBA out along to review my pics in the studio (long story, don't ask...). i was previously using the ThinkTank Streetwalker Pro. i was intending to 'upgrade' to the Streetwalker HardDrive version. however, i came across Manfrotto's Veloce VIII Backpack and decided to give it a try. so, this afternoon, i went down to SGcamerastore to pick one up. they come in other colours too - white, tan and black.
i do like the look of this bag, as it doesn't scream "camera bag". it is generally clean looking without messy strings/cords hanging that will snag things.
generally, the bag is rather well stitched. but, unlike some 'over-engineered' bags that i have owned in the past, the Veloce is single-stitched at the stress points - ie. the carrying straps.
frankly, i am not confident that i can over-stress the bag for long periods of time without something giving way. i might be wrong. lets see how this bag takes the abuse over time as i use it. and looking at the gears that i have now... i don't think i will even come close in weight-stressing it.
it has just enough pockets to put your stuff in. i would love a bit more inserts so that i can configure the bag further. one thing to note - the long pocket on the right of the above picture does NOT have the 'furry' stuff for you to velcro a insert onto. i have yet to figure what i can put there. i suspect it is for people who have their 70/80-200mm lenses, which i don't have now.
this is how it looks like with my camera stuff and MBA.
as you can see, it is quite roomy if you have short lenses. if you are carrying more than 1 zoom lens, then you will probably have to get additional inserts (like domke. CP sells them) to reconfigure the bag. there is still room for me to throw in my MBA power pack and some odds and ends. the insert paddings are not too thick, similarly for the interior padding. it does make the bag less bulky and lighter. but i don't suggest you throw your bag around. this bag (according to the website) is meant for airline carry-on. so, i guess it is not a good idea to check in your bag if you are going overseas.
overall, i quite like the look and feel of the bag. it is not too conspicuous and bulky. i would love a bit more paddings and inserts, and more velcro points. it is a trade-off between security and bulkiness. for a every-day carry around from point A to B, i guess this will suffice. but, if you foresee yourself abusing your bags in harsh environments, i think you are better off with one of the over-engineered bags from ThinkTank or Lowepro.